Editor's Note: This report has been updated to remove erroneous information.
What Happened: The Council of the European Union has adopted an amendment to the new EU gas directive, which will be presented to member states for implementation, according to an April 15 press release. The directive will extend the same EU regulations for pipelines within the bloc to import pipelines, such as Nord Stream 2, which would force Gazprom to accept a lower permitted ownership share.
Why It Matters: The legislation was initially introduced in 2017 to interdict the Nord Stream 2 project. Its current version would increase some restrictions on the operation of the pipeline, although it is unlikely to substantially threaten the project.
Background: Some Central and Eastern European countries and the United States are critical of the Nord Stream 2 project, arguing that it would increase European energy dependence on Russia and make it easier for Moscow to cut off gas supplies to Ukraine.
- EU: Germany Might Take the Lead in Negotiations With Russia on Nord Stream 2 (Feb. 8, 2019)
- The U.S. Casts a Suspicious Eye on Nord Stream 2 (May 24, 2018)
- A More Assertive Ukraine Returns to Russian Natural Gas (Feb. 12, 2018)